Joshua Tree National Park – Cholla Cactus Garden

Today I was on a mission to make the most of my time.  Thankfully last night was freezing cold and winds gusted to 40mph which forced me to sleep in the rental and wake early.  On the positive side I was awake well before sunrise and made my way to the Cholla Cactus Garden for the sunrise.

Had enough time to walk the area and set up my gear – what a bizarre feeling to actually stage a shot, most of the time I’m just winging it!

Here you can hike the short 1/4 mile nature trail through thousands of cholla cactus, also known as “jumping cactus” because their painful spines easily detach when brushed against.  Fences line the first part of this trail for protection.

And about halfway through the fences are gone.  You need to be especially careful here!

A closer view of the cacti glowing in the sunlight.  For a flat-lander like me these are exceedingly alien in appearance.

Macro view of the budding cactus fruits.  Always amazing that anything green exists in the desert.

One last look into the sun.  Time to get some serious mileage under my feet, stay tuned this will be a long day!

Hiking Data

Super short, flat, and easy hike.  Don’t get poked by the cacti and you’re in for some amazing views.

Lat = 33.9252129 , Long = -115.9289551 -- Show at Google Maps

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